NorthStar Plastics FAQs
You've got questions – we've got answers! Here are the most common FAQs!
1. WHAT MATERIAL IS THE BOX MADE FROM?
NorthStar Dog Boxes and travel crates are made from High Density Polyethylene – commonly referred to as HDPE.This material is typically recognized as commercial cutting board material and is commonly used in the boat industry and for outside cabinetry.
2. WHAT ISTHE ADVANTAGE OF THE HDPE MATERIAL?
White HDPE primarily reflects heat and so dogs on the inside are cooler and there is no need for insulation. As a comparison, on a recent 95 deg day, you can place your hand on the top of a plastic crate while you cannot touch an aluminum diamond deck box. Additionally, in comparison to aluminum, there is no aluminum oxide in HDPE to rub off and stain the dog’s coat. HDPE is also easy to clean with common household cleaners.
3. HOW THICK IS THE MATERIAL?
The sides, top, bottom and back of the box are ¼” thick and the front and the doors are ½” thick.
4. WHAT IS PLASTIC WELDING?
Plastic welding is very similar to metal welding. A tip heats and melts the adjacent material while dispensing a molten plastic which then fuses together in the joint.
5. CAN THE BOX BE GLUED TOGETHER?
HDPE is impervious to all adhesives and cannot be glued or caulked.
6. WHICH DOOR STYLE SHOULD I SELECT?
The standard door provides the greatest amount of ventilation and is the easiest to clean and keep clean. Louvered doors provide the least amount of ventilation, and the inside of the door has a protective screen that often collects dirt and debris and is also something that dogs like to play with and destroy.
7. CAN I GET A CUSTOM SIZE?
Custom sizes of standard configurations are available. Typical changes are width and height and we can also customize the depth.
8. HOW DO THE BOX/DRAWER COMPONENTS ATTACHED TO EACH OTHER?
The perimeter of each component has an external mounting flange. When the components are stacked top to bottom or side to side there is a threaded stainless-steel plate that is attached behind the flange. Stainless-steel bolts are then inserted to connect each of the components.
9. WHAT ARE THE FANS FOR?
Fans provide ventilation to the dog box. Fans are reversible to either push or pull air through the dog compartment. All of our dog boxes come with one fan per dog compartment. This provides maximum circulation and allows flexibility if you do not have a dog in each compartment.
10. ARE THE FANS REVERSIBLE?
Yes, each fan comes with a on/off/reversible switch.
11. CAN THE FANS BE REMOVED DURING COLD WEATHER?
The fans are designed to be removed during cold weather and then replaced with a blank cover to minimize heat loss.
12. HOW DO I CLEAN MY DOG CRATE?
Standard household cleaners are the best options for cleaning. Start with water and then stubborn dirt can be removed with cleansing/disinfecting solutions like Simple Green. For stains or scuffs, spray the area with WD-40, wait about 30 seconds, and simply wipe it off.
13. DOES THE PLASTIC WEIGH LESS THAN A METAL BOX?
Due to the weight of the materials and the combinations of thicknesses, a HDPE box may weigh less than a metal box but often is very similar.
14. WHY DO SOME BOXES HAVE ANGLED TOPS?
Angle tops provide two functions: The first is they provide a cleaner/smoother look when behind the cab of a truck. Second, the angled tops are required to fit in most enclosed vehicles like SUV’s and vans and for under truck toppers.
15. WHY DOES IT COST SO MUCH TO SHIP MY DOG BOX?
All boxes ship by common carrier (truck) and rates can vary based on size, weight, and location. Quoted rates on the website are estimates only and assume delivery to a commercial location with access to a loading dock or forklift. Residential deliveries are available with a significant upcharge for liftgates and call-ahead scheduling.
16. HOW DOES THE DOOR LATCH WORK? CAN IT POP OPEN?
The door latch is a combination latch. When the door is closed and the latch rotates, an internal cam compresses the door to the door frame. This provides a secure, tight and non-rattling door. Once rotated, the latch handle is folded into a shaped compartment that does not allow the latch to rotate. With multiple close and secure functions, this latch cannot bounce open or fail to close.
17. IS THE DOOR LOCKABLE?
18. WHY DON'T YOU HAVE AN OPTION FOR INSULATION?
Insulation is typically necessary for metal boxes to separate the sun heated outer layer while trying to keep the inner layer cool. Since we use white plastic that reflects the heat, insulation in the heat is not required. The only insulation required for cold weather applications is proper bedding. Dogs generate a tremendous amount of their own heat with proper bedding and simply need a small amount of ventilation and fresh air.